Wisconsin is in the unique position of having three lawmakers on the highly influential budget conference committee – Rep. Paul Ryan (co-chairman) and Senators Tammy Baldwin and Ron Johnson – who have an opportunity to protect Social Security and Medicare for current and future generations instead of cutting these vital programs for the purpose of deficit reduction or as a tradeoff for sequestration cuts.
“We urge all our 820,000-plus AARP members in Wisconsin to contact Senators Baldwin and Johnson, as well as Congressman Ryan, and let them how critical these programs are to the health and well-being of Wisconsin seniors,” said AARP Wisconsin federal issues advocacy director Lisa Lamkins.
“Social Security accounts for more than half of the typical older Wisconsinite’s family income. Low- and middle-income folks are even more reliant on this earned benefit, receiving more than three quarters of their family income from Social Security.”
“As for Medicare, the average Wisconsin beneficiary already spends nearly $4,200 a year on out-of-pocket health care costs,” Lamkins said. “We sure hope our two senators and Congressman Ryan, as well as all committee members, will keep Wisconsin’s best interests at heart as they do their work on the budget package.”
Last Friday AARP sent a letter to Chairman Patty Murray and Chairman Paul Ryan urging the budget conference to reject harmful cuts to Social Security and Medicare. The committee is charged with reaching some budget compromises by mid-December so that our government can avoid another shutdown because of a budget impasse.